AMERICA LOST

America lost yesterday. Winning the House alone not result enough to claim victory. There was no blue wave. The result merely bore fruit once again that there are two Americas.

The Democratic Party could not have taken a better shot at correcting things. Women and the young joining forces with the Party. The long lines. With what result? A draw from my perspective.

The best Democratic candidates lost. Beto O’Rourke, Andrew Gillum and Stacey Abrams.

All made good runs. Came up short. Abrams may still have a chance if there is a run off.

O’Rourke not finished. His career has just begun. Presidential timber. He is different. America needs different.

It is a disgrace that Gillum was beat by an obvious racist. Not surprising. Trump is a racist. Indication that half the country has racist tendencies.

Each side was rebuked. I prefer rebuked where one might consider wins.

The Democrats were rebuked because they did not win the Senate and three of their top candidates failed to win.

Trump rebuked because Democrats won Congress and a significant number of governorships.

What do the next two years hold? Escalated conflict or each side reaching across the aisle? Trump has already sent out a couple of tweets this morning. He is geared up to fight.

The Democrats are sure to use their subpoena power to cause investigations.

No marriage in the making.

The mid-terms a sad result.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

A CATASTROPHIC KEY WEST HAPPENING

A catastrophic event has occurred. Smoking no longer permitted in Berlin’s.

New owners. The no smoking rule invoked. Surprising because one of the primary new owners a smoker himself.

Please, do not bury me in e-mails about the evils of smoking. Some remain who enjoy it. A personal choice. I do not criticize those who opt not to smoke.

If second hand smoke is a problem, do not attend a place that permits smoking. Only a few are left in Key West. Many non-smoking restaurants and bars available for the multitude.

Lets me share the Berlin story with you.

Berlin’s full name is Berlin’s Cigar and Cocktail Bar. It has been a place frequented by smokers since 1947 when it was first opened as Alonzo Cothron and Berlin Felton’s Fish House.

Eventually, the name was changed to Alonzo’s and Berlin’s Lobster House. The dining institution of the day. The place for a night out followed by a Cuban cigar. The affluent then hopping a plane for a quick flight to Havana for a night of gambling. Returning in time to bed down while still dark outside.

Those must have been the days!

At some point, the establishment was rebuilt. Always a perfect waterfront site. Class before and class after the rebuilding.

Berlin’s had a cool look to it. The feeling of Rick’s cafe. Some consider the swankiest spot in Key West.

Paul Tripp was owner at the time of rebuilding. He said, “I wanted it to be a men’s club, to have a masculine feel to it.”

It did.

An intimate room. Mahogany walls. Maroon leather bound stools and large comfortable easy chairs. Cigars stored in a humidor. The perfect place to sit back and enjoy a smoke.

The present day Berlin’s has the finest filtration system I have ever experienced. Even if the person next to you was smoking a cigar, you never smelled it. The filtration system sucked up the smoke  immediately. After leaving, your clothes did not smell of smoke.

Smokers generally ate in the intimacy of Berlin’s. A&B Lobster House, the restaurant portion is extremely large with a huge outdoor balcony to accommodate everyone else.

The food at the bar and restaurant the same. Always excellent. Pricey. Worth it, however. Especially when I could enjoy a couple of drinks and cigarettes before dinner and another after dinner while enjoying the last drink of the night.

The change makes no sense. It will not increase business. It might lessen it, if anything.

The Chart Room my only stop last night. John bartending. Ran into Diesel last year. Again, last night. We spoke at length. I enjoyed his company.

Diesel is from Ohio. Retired. He and his wife Lynise bought a home in Key West several years ago. Lynise was not with him. An early to bed person as I am most evenings.

They spend 6 months a year on the island. I told Diesel he was a snowbird. He did not like the title. Preferred to be known as a transient Conch. Don’t think it would fly with the Conchs.

Cori Convertino, how I envy you! Cori was on Ballast Key yesterday!

Cori is technically Dr. Cori Convertino. She is curator at the Custom House. Over the years, she became a close friend of David Wolkowsky. David you will recall died 2 month ago.

David enjoyed 3 homes in the Key West area. One was on Ballast Key. A small island 16 miles west of Key West. A magnificent edifice planned and built by David.

Not sure why Cori was there yesterday. Wish she had invited me. I assume she was there for some reason having to do with the furnishings. David was a huge benefactor to the Custom House.

I met Fritz Adare 12 years ago at a party at Larry and Christine Smith’s home. Nice guy. He was introduced as a personal trainer. Looked it. A magnificent body. Skin like a baby’s back end. A body that sparkled.

It was obvious Fritz was a good health addict.

I rarely saw him. We would run into each other one or two times a year. Always a cordial hello and a few words.

Yesterday’s Facebook listed the day as Fritz’s birthday. I sent him a Happy Birthday!

Last night, Larry and Christine telephoned me. I knew there had to be trouble if both were on the phone together. Fritz had died several months ago. I did not know.

Strange. I never saw his obituary. Looked for it this morning. Not in the Key West Citizen. Found it in a South Bend, Indiana newspaper. Fritz died on May 29. He was residing in an assisted living facility at the time. Age, 71.

May he rest in peace.

When older people who I know pass on, I get a bit nervous. I am 83. Fritz was 71. He unquestionably was a health nut. Always working out. Took all kinds of vitamins and supplement pills. Nutrition was a big thing with him.

I do not dwell on death. Mark Twain said, “Age is not an issue of mind. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.

What will be, will be.

An important thing in life. After saturday’s victory, Syracuse is now ranked 14th in the nation. A 7-2 record so far. Go ‘Cuse!

Enjoy your day!

 

HOT REUBEN CORNED BEEF SANDWICH

My taste buds were in for a treat last night.

Irish Kevin’s serves a hot Reuben corned beef sandwich. Continued hearing good things about it. Decided last night to enjoy one.

I love corned beef! Like my mother used to make. Boil the meat forever. Arrived at the table juicy and moist. Fat important. We probably ate the cheap cut so there was a lot of fat. Added big time to the taste.

Difficult to get a good corned beef sandwich these days. The meat tough, cold and without fat.

Not last night! Warm, juicy, tender and with a touch of fat.

Do yourself a favor. Go to Irish Kevin’s and enjoy one!

In addition to the great sandwich, you can enjoy the young ladies stepping on stage and exhibiting their breasts.

A perfect evening!

My night began at the Blue Macaw. Crowded. A group of seniors in a long congo line. Either from the cruise ship staying overnight or they were Parrotheads. I could not tell. They were having a good time!

Philadelphia Phil and Montana bartending. Chatted at the bar with Alica, John and Fiona.

Alica was doing her grocery shopping. On the computer. Walmart. Says she saves $500 a month. Buys everything but meat and items that melt. Primarily canned goods, some fruits, paper products and make up. Delivered to her front door, no charge. Of course being from Walmart, everything significantly discounted.

Drove over to the Chart Room. Crowded, also. Standing room only. No one I knew. Nodded at John, turned around and left. It was then I decided to try the corn beef at Irish Kevin’s.

My afternoon was spent watching Syracuse/Wake Forest. Syracuse won 41-24. Now, 7-2. Fantastic! It has been years since we had such a record.

The rankings are not out till tomorrow. I suspect we will go down to around #13.

Jimmy Buffett highlighted a Democratic rally last night in West Palm Beach. Gillum, Nelson and other candidates present of course. Many Parrotheads in the crowd. Some drove great distances to be there. I would not be surprised if some drove up from the Parrothead Convention here in Key West.

Buffett changed the lyrics to Come Monday to fit the occasion. The lyrics sung last night: “Come Tuesday, things will change. Come Tuesday, we’re making a change. Its been two insane years and its time to really switch gears.”

Staying with politics, it was on this day in 2008 that Obama was elected President. The first black person to be so elected.

With the election a few days away, a few random thoughts.

As a society, we are hemorrhaging in violence. Especially gun violence. The remedy is not to arm teachers, priests and rabbis.

Universal health care required/needed. The U.S. is the only industrialized nation to be without it. Universal health care would assure everyone receiving proper treatment and at the same time stop the multitude of personal bankruptcies the result of health care costs.

Immigrants from Guatemala and Honduras have heard the call of the words on the Statue of Liberty. They are looking to the place Reagan called a “shining city on a hill.” It is so inconsistent with our values to send the military to shoot them dead at the border.

Kill someone and that person’s family and friends will not forget. Trump has broken the deal with Iran. Additional sanctions will be imposed today.

Iranian people are dying from shortages of certain necessary items. Insulin being one.

Trump’s actions an abuse of power?

A President cannot unilaterally break a treaty. The Senate approved it initially. Such is the law. The Senate must vote to break it. I also believe Trump broke the treaty to show the world how tough he is. A bully!

There is another reason. Trump and Netanyahu are birds of a feather. Authoritarians. Even before Trump’s election, Netanyahu was crying for war against Iran. He wants the U.S. and other nations to join him against Iran. Especially the U.S.

Netanyahu’s real reason is not that Iran is going to blow up the world. It is that he wants it firmly established that Israel is the power in the Middle East. Neither Iran nor anyone else.

Enjoy your Sunday!

DEMOCRACY’S NEXT STEP?

Jair Bolsonaro is Brazil’s recently elected President.

An authoritarian.

Trump evidences similar tendencies. Trump can take us to Bolsonaro’s ways. Not there yet. He is a step behind Bolsonaro.

Bolsonaro won with Evangelical support. He is frequently compared to Philippine President Duterte.

A few Bolsonaro quotes let you know the man.

“I am in favor of dictatorship, a regime of exception.”

Killing “…..some 30,000…..if some innocent people are going to die, fine, in any war innocents die.”

“I would not employ a woman with the same salary of a man.”

“I’ll give carte blanche for the police to kill.”

“We are going to gun down all those Workers Party supporters.” The Workers Party his opposition. He spoke these words at a rally while mimicking shooting a rifle.

Beto O’Rourke and Ted Cruz in a battle in Texas. Respectfully, I consider Cruz political slime. Trump suggested Cruz’s father was involved in the Kennedy assassination. He also insulted Cruz’s wife. Today, Cruz’s head is up Trump’s ass.

A relatively recent happening solidified my thinking of Cruz. Cruz said O’Rourke was illegally funding the caravan. A Trump type  statement. Not true.

The actual facts. Asylum seekers already processed and awaiting a decision are sheltered in churches in the Texas border area. Not part of the caravan. The caravan still 1,000 miles and one month away.

One of O’Rourke’s staff offices used prepaid cards to buy baby wipes, diapers, water, fruit and granola bars for those awaiting decision re their asylum requests. Less than $300 involved. If more, if $3,000, not a crime and most certainly not funding the caravan.

Which brings me to Trump’s way of thinking re the migration caravan. The President should read/recall certain Biblical quotes.

Matthew 25:38: “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”

Proverbs 14:31: “Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.”

Last night’s first stop was the Chart Room. Packed. Locals and tourists.

Met Lorne Davidson again. Met him last year at the Chart Room. From northern Florida. He was with Diane. Met her before, also. A friend of Sheila’s.

Steve, Cindy, and David at the bar. Good Key Westers all! Love them! We enjoyed good conversation.

The three are oracles of wisdom when it comes to Key West. They have been here a long time. Last night, Steve and I engaged in a long talk about the Key West of the 1970’s and 1980’s.

The most important and exciting thing I learned from Steve last night concerns his sister Sam who lives in Seattle. Reads this blog everyday.  Lived in Key West for 2 years at one time.

Love you, Sam! Keep reading! Look forward to meeting you when next you visit Steve and Cindy.

A long talk with Paul and Stephanie. From Detroit. They have been visiting Key West since 2006. Now own three time shares at Banyon Court. One week three different times of the year.

Paul is a tool and die maker. Stephanie a dental assistant. They have a son 22 who is completing college.

Enjoyed my time with them.

Then to the Blue Macaw. Basically empty. Second night in a row. The rain could be the reason. Blue Macaw is an outside restaurant and bar.

A big parade sunday afternoon. The Super Boat Parade. Signifying the beginning of Super Boat Race Week. The boats magnificent. Huge power boats. Multi-million dollars in cost. The races a rich man’s sport.

My lesbian wives Donna and Terri celebrated their tenth anniversary yesterday. Married for real! Loving congratulations!

They were leaving for Tampa when I spoke with them. Terri’s cancer checkup scheduled.

People are confused as to why I call them my lesbian wives. One person recently told me she thought I was actually married to the two.

The true story is that when Donna and Terri were to be married, I was supposed to be Best Man. The day before, I had a pain, went into the hospital, and lost 25 percent of my colon.

Missed the wedding. For some reason, I mentioned at the time I considered them my lesbian wives and the label took hold.

The Turtle Hospital in Marathon a wonder. Top professional full time care. Turtles with strange maladies flown from all over the world to the Hospital.

The Hospital’s motto: Rescue, Rehab, Release. They do!

A little World War II history.

Roosevelt was unhappy with Japan. Japan had invaded Indochina. He wanted them to not only stop the war, but get out also. To evidence his seriousness, he seized all Japanese assets in the U.S. and closed the Panama Canal to Japanese vessels. Roosevelt also cut off all oil supplies to Japan. A death knell for the island nation.

Japan was led by a tough group at the time. Tojo and his followers. They were offended by Roosevelt’s actions. They gave the order to bomb Pearl Harbor.

An interesting fact is that the order was given on November 3, 1941. Thirty four days before Pearl Harbor was actually bombed.

The order to bomb was known as Top Secret Order No. 1.

My question is why did we not know of the imminent bombing of Pearl Harbor. I assume the U.S. had intelligence people. Thirty four days and no one knew.

Difficult to understand.

In an hour and a half, it will be 12 noon. I will be glued to the TV set. Syracuse playing Wake Forest.

For the first time in 20 yeas, Syracuse has a decent team. It has been a long time. The team 6-2 so far this season.

Enjoy your day!

HAVE A GOOD DAY

I came across a quotable quote. I want to share it with you. Sensible……It’s a good day to have a good day.

May we all!

Daytime typical yesterday. A haircut with Lori. Followed by lunch at Sandy’s Cafe. Sandy’s has changed its name. Now, Fernandy’s.

Then a major event. I voted! A good crowd. Everyone quiet and serious.

As I was leaving, one of the clerks handed me a stickum. Said: I voted. I wore it with pride on my shirt all afternoon. I felt differently about voting this year. Perhaps because I hope we will be taking our country back.

Not wanting to run into Parrotheads again at the Chart Room, I headed directly to Blue Macaw in the evening. The place was crowded. I knew no one.

Blue Macaw has changed its Happy Hour time. During the summer, it was from 4 to 9. Now, ends at 7. By 7:30 the bar was desolate. I was all alone.

When Happy Hour ended at 9, the bar was still packed till 11.

Which way makes more money? Stop at 7 or 9. I don’t know. The proprietor must.

I read somewhere that the Casa Marina had opened a new bar. The HFM Sidecar. Peter Diamond was performing. Interested in seeing the new bar and hearing Peter sing motivated me to drive to the Casa Marina.

Was it busy! Parking lot traffic off the wall. No room for me. Where were all these people coming from? Then it dawned on me. The Casa Marina is the headquarters every year for the Parrothead Convention.

I did not think I could handle it. Went home.

Glad I did not opt to park 4 blocks away. I would have been disappointed. This morning’s paper indicates the HFM Sidebar will not open till monday night.

Andrew Gillum was in Key West yesterday morning. The Democratic candidate for Governor. He spoke on Higgs Beach behind Salute’s. Five hundred in attendance. The thrust of Gillum’s talk unity and progress.

I voted for Gillum yesterday. His opponent Donald Trump in every respect.

I missed the talk. Had to get the blog out. Seeing a candidate in person does not appear as important these days as years ago. Television brings the candidate and event to us several times during a day.

David Wolkowsky was a friend. Better stated, I was an admirer of David Wolkowsky. One of the best acquaintances made in my life time.

The November 1 edition of Keys Weekly ran an excellent article involving Jimmy Buffett and David Wolkowsky. Sarah Thomas wrote it. Titled: Streets You Know By Heart. It was actually the result of a personal interview she had with Buffett. Outstanding!

Wolkowsky is mentioned many times. Probably because he and Buffett were close friends. Wolkowsky gave Buffett his start at the Chart Room back in the late 1960’s.

The article the best I have read re the Wolkowsky/Buffett relationship. Very personal. A job well done by Sarah Thomas.

Trump the bully ranting and raving yesterday. Made it very clear that if any rocks are thrown at the soldiers he is bringing in to defend the border, the rocks will be considered rifles. The military will be authorized to shoot their guns in retaliation.

A horse’s ass! The U.S. Army not permitted to utilize weapons within U.S. borders. The law is the Posse Comitatus Act.

Suppose a kid throws a stone. Seven or eight years old. The soldier going to shot the youngster?

All madness!

A recent study by eminent scientists made an alarming report re climate change. Ocean waters are heating 60 percent faster than thought.

Key West loves Harry Truman and Harry Truman loved Key West.

On this day in 1948, Truman defeated New York Governor Thomas Dewey for the Presidency by a little more than 2 million votes.

Truman was the underdog throughout the campaign. Not expected to win. His victory a surprise.

The Chicago Tribune was so sure of a Dewey victory that it put out on the streets around midnight the next day’s paper with the bold  headline: DEWEY DEFEATS TRUMAN.

H.V. Kaltenborn one of the country’s most respected radio commentators at the time. His voice unique. He announced late on election night: Dewey has defeated Truman.

It was a different day when everyone woke the next morning.

Truman was literally defecated upon throughout the campaign. A mere farmer, he was considered to have been  lucky to have had three years as President because of Roosevelt’s death.

Truman was a fighter. He took everyone on during the campaign.

Campaigns in those days were from the platform on the last car of a train. Truman went on an extensive campaign train trip. Became known as Truman’s “whistle stop” campaign. The thrust of his campaign was that the country had some problems because of a “do nothing Congress.” The country obviously agreed.

I was at one of the whistle stops. Thirteen and in the 8th grade. Myself and two buddies rode our bicycles to the railroad station to see the President. A huge crowd. We were so far back, we could see nothing. So we did what young kids are apt to do. We rode our bikes to the rear of the train directly in front of the crowd and in front of Truman. No more than 3-4 feet from him.

I enjoyed one more experience with the election. It was 1960. I was a senior in law school at Syracuse University. Truman was at the University for 2 days for various talks.

The University arranged a private luncheon for 12 purportedly outstanding students to lunch with Truman. Twelve out of 35,000. I was selected to represent the law school.

Two round tables set for the luncheon. Name cards as to where we would sit. Mine was immediately to the right of Truman. Wow!

Following the food portion of the luncheon, Truman rose to speak. He spoke of his victory over Dewey. He was like a little kid. He still was thrilled he had whipped Dewey’s ass.

He had a copy of the Chicago Tribune and waved it for all to see. He also had a recording of H. V. Kaltenborn announcing to the world Dewey’s victory. He jokingly mimicked Kaltenborn when the recording had concluded.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

A NUMBER OF ITEMS…..

Busy morning ahead. Doctor visit, hair cut appointment, etc. Ergo, I am briefly hitting on some items I think  or would like to think need mentioning. No special order involved.

Fifteen thousand U.S. Army personnel now on the way to the southwest border. The number ha gone from 800 to 15,000 in a week. Fifteen thousand as many troops as we have in Afghanistan.

Watched Beto O’Rourke being interviewed for an hour monday night. Reminded me of Robert Kennedy.

Economy doing good? General Electric has a crack in its wall. Under financial stress. Dividend 119 years old. This year reduced to a penny a share.

Staying with the economy, General Motors experiencing tariff and market pressures. Eighteen thousand jobs to be eliminated. Salaried employees going via buyouts.

Harry Dent an economist. Called the financial bust of 2008. Says the DOW will experience a catastrophic plunge. As low as 6,500. Hard to believe that low. Claims it could happen as soon as the next few months. An economist I am not. However, I have been predicting a recession since last year. Thought it would occur late this year or early next year.

China’s President Xi has ordered his military to “prepare for war.” Diplomatic relations between Washington and Beijing have hit rock bottom.

Chart Room first last night. Tammy bartending. Parrotheads in town. Took over the Chart Room. I only stayed for one drink. All seniors, they were not talking to each other or to me. Merely staring ahead.

Drove over to Blue Macaw. Better. People communicating. Terri singing. Chatted with Lynda and Bob Frechette, John and Fiona, and Mary.

Syracuse football doing well this year. So far, 6-2. Saturday, Wake Forest at noon. Hopefully Syracuse will continue its winning ways.

Syracuse basketball has arrived. Thrilled I am! Played Le Moyne in a practice game last night. Syracuse won by 37 points. Don’t laugh that it was Le Moyne. Le Moyne made it to the Elite Eight last year. Season officially opens tuesday when Syracuse plays East Washington.

Beware! Big Brother increasingly looking over our shoulders. His presence has greatly increased since Trump became President. The U.S. is accelerating efforts to monitor social media to preempt major anti-government protests. Social media posts of American citizens who don’t like Trump are the force promoting latest U.S. military funded research.

Think of all that is happening involving the U.S. Question: Is the U.S. on the verge of a nervous breakdown?

On this day in 1512, the Sistine Chapel was exhibited to the public for the first time. One of Michelangelo’s greatest works. Thirty five years ago, I was in Rome and had the good fortune to see it. Magnificent!

Fantasy Fest over. I am waiting for the Citizen to print its analysis of the event. Business volume and number of participants. Up or down? I have been asking around what locals think. Generally, more risqué and fewer people.

This has been fun!

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

GHOSTS AND GOBLINS, TRICK OR TREAT NIGHT

Tonight, Halloween! Tons of kids running up and down streets, attacking front doors, shouting as the door is opened…..Trick or Treat!

The Trick or Treat thing I believe regional. In upstate New York from whence I came, it was Guess or Give. Either verbiage produced the same result. Goodies for the ghosts and goblins.

Halloween is of Christian origin. Some believe a pagan beginning.

I enjoyed Halloween with my children and then with grandkids Robert and Ally. I walked with my children and watched from the sidewalk as they did their thing and collected goodies. Robert and Ally I did in conjunction with their parents.

I never did the door to door thing when young. My mother was from the old country. She was convinced I would get in trouble if I was out Halloween night. A tough woman in this regard. Never relented. I never saw the dark of Halloween night while in grammar school and high school.

Maybe that is why I enjoyed escorting my children and grandchildren in my later years.

Ghosts a part of Halloween! Look closely and you might see one.

Key West has many ghosts. The one I will mention has been seen  many nights. Not just Halloween.

The Lady in Blue.

She can be found at Captain Tony’s Saloon. The bar and the Lady in Blue legendary. Captain Tony’s was at one time an ice house. Also, the city morgue. The ice helped keep the bodies from decomposing.

Captain Tony’s was the facility where hangings took place. Not always legal ones. The tree used for executions still lives inside the bar growing through the roof.

The Lady in Blue was not legally hung. The populace was upset with her. She brutally murdered her husband and 2 young sons. A mob lynched her.

She was hung in a blue dress.  The same dress she had worn while committing the murders.

The Lady in Blue today lives in the bar. She makes frequent appearances. Many claim to have caught a glimpse of her as she roams the bar. Women beware, it is said she often appears in the lady’s room.

Tropic Cinema has been closed for almost a month. Renovations. It has reopened.

The Fall is generally Key West’s slow season. Merchants are happy when Fantasy Fest arrives. They are more happy when Boat Season is here.

Powerboat racing. Accurately titled: Powerboat Racing World Championships.

Boats big and expensive. Owners arrive with crews consisting of drivers and mechanics. All bring their ladies. The owners are affluent. The hotels, restaurants and bars enjoy a week of extremely good business.

Spectators galore. The races exciting.

Powerboat Race Week runs from November 4 through November 10.

My podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou last night. A hard hitting fast moving show. Most of the time spent discussing the Pittsburgh synagogue attack, the migration towards our southwest borders, and Hurricane Michael.

Hurricane Michael and the migration/carnival situation caused me the most concern. Michael probably because of Irma. Irma still with me. Michael much worse.

Michael hit 18 days ago. I said before Michael came ashore, and have said and written several times since, the federal government would fail in its response.

So far they have.

Little is reported re conditions at the Panhandle, for example. I suspect because FEMA and the federal government in general are not doing their job effectively. Water, food, shelter, power, etc. still a major problem.

Lets direct attention to the refugees traveling from Guatemala and Honduras to our southwest border. They are walking. Young, old, mothers carrying babies, pregnant women, children. A 2,000 mile trip. One thousand completed. Another thousand to go.

The group is doing 30 miles a day. It will take another month for them to reach U.S. borders.

Trump last week began with it is an “emergency” situation. An “invasion”. He said he was sending the U.S. Army down. Understand that already there are 20,000 border guards and 2,000 National Guardsmen.

The first day, we were told 800 Army personnel would be sent. Two days later, the number rose to 5,200. Last night, it was being reported that the number could go as high as 14,000.

Defense Secretary Mattis said Army soldiers would be at the border by the weekend. Equipment also.

It is against the law to deploy Army soldiers for action within U.S. borders. Called the Posse Comitatus Act. An exception is in the case of an “invasion.” Experts commenting this week have all said no way do these refugees constitute an invasion. At a minimum between Border guards, National Guardsmen and U.S. Army personnel, there will be 27,200 to guard our borders. Against the approaching caravan yet a month away.

The caravan was first reported as 4,000. A few days later, 7,000. Now, 3,500. It is obvious that fewer than 3,500 will reach the U.S. To be confronted by 27,200 to keep them out.

Overkill.

Last week, the news was the Army would neither have nor use guns. They were being sent for administrative assistance. Now guns are in the air!

Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen made a trip to the border a few days ago. Upon her return, she was asked why she had gone. Her response, to work out “terms of engagement.” Means guns, firepower. When will the Army shoot at refugees? From no guns to shooting guns in less than a week.

We all know this is a political ploy on Trump’s part. He wants the immigration issue to play in next tuesday’s election.

Hope you are still with me. There is a point to be made here.

Why send the 5,200 U.S. Army troops to the border now? Or, at all for that matter? They should already have been in the Panhandle, etc. The Panhandle need is today. The caravan problem a month off, if at all.

Simple. Genius not required to understand what should have been done or be done.

Trump visited Pittsburgh yesterday. He was ignored. Major political leaders did not show up. It was Donald, Melania, Ivana, Jared, and about 3 other people walking around.

Families of the deceased refused to see him.

The street demonstrations were sorrowful. Many carrying signs indicating in effect they did not want Trump there.

The President was publicly insulted. He deserved it.

Enjoy your day!

WHAT A MORNING…..

What a morning! When things go wrong, they screw up all the way!

It is now 12 noon. I am just starting the blog. Normally, I begin at 6 in the morning.

I had an 8 am doctor visit. Fasting blood work. Left the house at 7:45. Heavy going to work traffic. I was late. Got to doctor’s office 8:10.

Receptionist wanted to know why I was there. Blood work, I said. She said tomorrow.

She took pity on me and said sit down, I’ll work you in. Five minutes later, my blood was being drawn.

The doctor’s office is all of a 100 feet from the Cuban Coffee Queen. I stopped in for breakfast. Cuban cheese toast and coffee. Instead, I was served a regular huge portion of bread embodying 2 eggs and cheese. More food than I would eat in a day.

They said enjoy. I said what the hell and did!

Could not finish the sandwich. Too much.

Went to my car to go home to do this blog. Battery dead. I was beginning to suspect this was not my day.

Called AAA. Excellent repair man. Told me something was corroded and that was why the battery was not functioning. He did his thing and then charged the battery.

Everything in good order! One problem. My trip home delayed. The repair man told me I had to drive the car 45 minutes to charge the battery. More delay. I spent the 45 minutes driving up US 1 and back.

My podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou tonight. Normally I prepare the show tuesday afternoon. I would have had to move my ass to get it done and done correctly if such was the case today.

For whatever reason, I prepared tonight’s show yesterday afternoon. Why, I do not know. First time. In any event, I will not be rushed when I finish this blog. God must have known the problems I was going to experience this morning so moved me to do today’s work yesterday.

Aqua’s Dueling Bartenders last night. Tom Luna and Rick Dery their usual great entertainers. Terri White guest performer. Now blind, you would never know it. Her performance outstanding!

Wife Donna with her, of course. Donna dressed in black. Looked fantastic. The black contrasted well with her white hair.

Sheila and her California designer friend Carol at the bar. Jean Thornton with them. Liz on the other side. Greeted Liz with a kiss. Enjoyed a couple of drinks with Jean.

Jean left and Mary showed up. I was a lucky man. All these lovely ladies to chat with.

In between, Catt Zinger and her sister Stephanie sat next to me. Tom Luna introduced me to Catt. What a history!

Catt and her husband now live in Kaneohe, Hawaii. Catt visiting Key West for 3 weeks. Lived here for several years. While in Key West, she bartended at Garden of Eden for 5 years. Also did some bartending time at Aqua where she got to know Tom Luna.

When Catt married 5 years ago, the service took place at the Garden of Eden. Eighty guests. A bus or train used to transport guests around as the couple did a pre-planned Duval crawl.

One stop was Aqua. Tom Luna bartending. A good friend. Catt said Tom went out of his way to make the stop a memorable one. The group spent 2 hours at Aqua. She is forever felt grateful to Tom for the fun time he provided.

Almost forgot sister Stephanie. Lovely, also. Not from Hawaii. Lives somewhere in Florida.

On the way home, I stopped at Dion’s on US 1 for Dion’s chicken. I have been in Key West for 30 years. Would you believe…..Never tried Dion’s chicken before. A popular item in Key West.

Took the chicken home and devoured. So good! Even better. Hard to describe how good. I will be enjoying it with some degree of regularity from now on.

Clayton and Valerie two of the most respected persons in Key West. Clayton left Australia many years ago and after time in a country or two ended up in Key West. I first met Clayton when he was bartending at Antonia’s. Valerie when she was bartending at Hot Tin Roof.

The couple has operated Vino’s on Duval for 8 years. Hard workers. They have 2 other Vino’s elsewhere in Florida.

The Fantasy Fest Parade resulted in a problem. With all the “perversity” going on, it is fodder for preachers who decry such “wrongdoing.”

A preacher ended up in front of Vino’s. Remained. Had a microphone electrically operated. Stood in front of Vino’s and would not leave. Told everyone in effect how bad they were.

The preacher was affecting Clayton’s business. People were not going into Vino’s. Those on the porch who had paid for a seat were being disturbed.

Clayton twice asked the preacher to please stop and move on. He refused to hear Clayton. Words were exchanged. Clayton was pushed by the preacher.

Retaliation is wonderful. Clayton cut the wire to the microphone.

The police arrived. The preacher was not arrested for battery. Clayton was arrested. For cutting the wire. The charge misdemeanor mischief.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum will be in Key West thursday morning. At 8:30. An early bird. On Higgs Beach, behind Salute’s.

Come hear Florida’s next Governor.

A local blog this morning. Join me tonight for my podcast show Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou at 9. Material all non-local. I have much to say. Hear my pointed ranting and raving. Guaranteed you will enjoy. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

 

PATRIOTIC EMOTIONS

The Comments Section of this blog generally a war zone. Opposing political positions. No place for the timid.

A comment today emotionally moved me. A video. Touched my patriotic nerve. Brought tears to my eyes.

I recommend you view it. Seven minutes long. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CDdY46iAwHI&feature=youtu.be

Food for thought. Hatred is being spewed by those at the very top of the American political stage. Such the case, the Pittsburgh synagogue incident didn’t just happen. It was bound to happen.

Though the Comment Section has its moments of ferocity, occasionally a touch of humor appears. I consider the following humorous recognizing at the same time it insults a portion of American society: Ban Pre-Shredded Cheese. Make America Grate Again.

My last night began with the Chart Room. Vacationing trial attorney Scott at the bar again. He knows a good place when he finds it. I have seen him there 3 nights recently.

Also at the bar were Sheila, Carol and Jean Thornton. Carol visiting with Sheila for the week. A Californian. Professionally, a costume designer. She and Sheila were out every night of Fantasy Fest in a different costume.

Love of my life Jean Thornton sitting with them.

Chatted with all 3 ladies for a time. Then Jean suggested I join her for dinner. Stone crabs at the Pier One Restaurant. She was buying.

How could I say no.

Jean and I pigged out on stone crabs. Ordered nothing else except a drink each.

A glorious day for Syracuse. The college football rankings came out today. Syracuse is ranked #22. The first time Syracuse has been ranked since 2001.

Syracuse travels to Wake Forest saturday. Hope the ‘Cuse winning ways continue. Syracuse 6-2, Wake Forest 4-4.

When the federal government recommends privatizing jails it is for the benefit of the corporations owning them. Not the tax paying public. Mucho dinero involved. Political donations huge.

I have been opposed to jail privatization since day one. Two primary reasons. The U.S. crime rate has steadily been going down. The other is that corruption occurs within the privatization system. An issue I have written about in the past several times.

The New York Time Editorial Board in an Opinion Piece 10/28/18 titled “The Hate Poisoning America” wrote in part: “Violent crimes remains at historic lows across the United States. But by various indexes, hate appears to be on the rise.”

Justice moves slowly. The axiom Justice delayed is justice denied occurs in many scenarios. One is the length of time it takes for a death sentence to be carried out. Ten to twenty years not uncommon.

I am totally in support of a defendant sentenced to death to receive every legal theory available to avoid the death sentence. However, 10-20 years is a bit long. The victim died in a much shorter time frame. Minutes to days in most instances.

It was not always a long stretched out period. An example involves President McKinley.

The President was shot on September 6, 1901. He died September 14, 1901. His assassin was executed October 29, 1901.

Eighty four days from the commission of the crime to the carrying out of the death sentence.

The assassin was executed by use of the electric chair at Auburn Prison.

I go out of my way to mention Auburn Prison. I was in the prison several times to depose witnesses. Not a pleasant place even to visit.

Terri sings tonight! Guest performer with Dueling Bartenders at Aqua.

Enjoy your day!

 

ANTI-SEMITISM IGNORED WHILE ON THE RISE

A fanatical Jew hater had his moment yesterday at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. Robert Bowers entered the synagogue while services were being held with an A-15 and 3 hand revolvers. He killed 11 and wounded 6.

An act of religious terror. The worst attack on people of the Jewish faith in American history.

Anti-Semitism has been on the rise world wide, as well as in the U.S., in recent years. Increasingly each year. The number of U.S. incidences rose significantly in 2016-2017. Up 60 percent.

The reasons interesting.

The 2007-2008 recession. Jews are considered bankers and money people. The claim was their greed brought on the recession.

Trump now is an admitted nationalist. The nationalist label applies to neo-Nazis and members of the Klu Klux Klan.

I do not think Trump personally is a neo-Naxi. His problem is he does not understand. He does not think. He does not tie group relationships together. He is very much pro-Israel, his daughter Ivanka and husband Jared are Jews, his former close friend and attorney Michael Cohen a Jew.

Anti-Semitism on college campuses has been on the rise significantly in recent years. Complaints to administrators have generally fallen on deaf ears.

Israel’s rise powerwise. Netanyahu has become an authoritarian figure. A bully. A warmonger. Similar to Trump in many ways.

Trump’s reaction to Charlottesville last year. White supremacy groups participated. Neo-Nazis and Klu Klux Klan. Trump said violations occurred on both sides.

Finally, Trump’s constant venting of hatred. Such encourages those of weak minds who follow him. Bowers the most recent example. I read somewhere in the past 24 hours that to support Trump is to support an environment in which more Richard Bowerses are inevitable.

Trump is blind as regards that which he is encourages. The blind cannot see.

The American people must put a stop to Trump and the evil he promotes. The only way is through the ballot box. Most must vote Democratic. Even Republicans. The result of the November 6 election will indicate whether we support Trump and the movement of hate he has unleashed, or oppose it.

The U.S. is standing on tip toes on the top edge of the Empire State Building. We either fall forward to continued destruction, or back to be saved.

To happier things.

The Fantasy Fest Parade was last night. How successful I cannot say. I did not attend. I will not know till tomorrow morning’s newspaper. The Key West Citizen does not publish on Sundays.

I had a more enjoyable time than the parade. I remained home and watched the Syracuse/North Carolina State game. North Carolina a 2 point favorite going into the game. Syracuse won 51-41. Syracuse now 6-2. The best start and best season in 20 years. Go ‘Cuse!

Bad things can happen in places other than Pittsburgh. A serious sick central Florida event occurred which fortunately was thwarted.

You will ask how/why could such a thing even enter into anyone’s mind.

The place the Bartow Middle School. Two girls 11 and 12 planned to kill 15 other female students, drink their blood, possibly eat body parts, and then commit suicide.

The girls were caught by a teacher waiting for other girls to enter. The girls had in their possession a kitchen knife, a butcher knife, a pizza cutter and a goblet.

They were Satanic worshipers.

The Canadian blogger Ian Welsh recently wrote re climate change. The blog titled: Bend Over And Kiss Your Ass Goodbye. Welsh a graphic writer.

I quote relevant portions of Welsh’s article.

“We are so far up shit creek we are never seeing clear waters again.”

“Climate change is settled science. Climate change is past the point of no return…..If you believe that nations are even going to keep the Paris agreement targets, you’re such a fool you’ll be sold all the world’s bridges.”

“We are long past (a good 10 years past at a minimum) any possibility of stopping this.”

Busy day ahead for me. Sloan over at 12. Big day. What would I do without her.

Tonight, a drink or two. Visit Lauri at Rum Bar and John at the Chart Room.

Enjoy your Sunday!